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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
On the Cover: Standing Room Only
Jeremiah Armenta / STATE PRESS MAGAZINE
On a muggy Thursday evening in late August, Phoenix's Modified Arts is packed to the brim with sweaty attendees waiting to see Phoenix band Reubens Accomplice take the stage.

Two nights later, a long line of people stretches down Jackson Street in Phoenix, waiting to enter the Brickhouse Theater to see a show that features local acts The Stiletto Formal and DeSole.

Both crowds are here to see shows that feature both local and national acts.

While national magazines like Rolling Stone and Billboard have reported decreases in live music performance sales in the last few years, many Phoenix and Tempe venues are not experiencing a problem.

Local venue owners, ranging from the huge, superstar stadiums to the smaller clubs and music halls, claim that attendance is high, but there continues to be news of a national slump.

Bring back the bookworms
Joseph Mannino / STATE PRESS MAGAZINE
As reading assignments pile up during the school year, students say they donít have enough time to read for fun anymore. What happened to the good old days of bedtime stories and summer reading clubs at the library? College students don't have time to read for fun.

They can barely finish the 4,314 pages of Uncle Tom's Cabin or peruse the mundane pages of a plant-biology textbook, let alone have time for pleasure reading.

According to the National Endowment of the Arts "Reading at Risk" survey, the number of young readers is dropping. And for those who do read, the amount they are reading is dropping as well.


Bicycle battle
Bicyclists seem to exist in a transportation purgatory that is often closer to hell than heaven.

Walking pedestrians consider them to be a nuisance just a step below actual vehicles. Actual vehicles consider them just a step above walking pedestrians, sometimes even veering into bike lanes as if only cars have the right to be on the road.

Funky Feet
From shoes with built-in roller-skate wheels to Nike tennis shoes that monitor your workout regimen, footwear has gained new ground in fashion - and functionality.

To infinity and beyond
Captain Spock, fairies, pirates and storm troopers.

Science fiction fans went all out for this year's masquerade at CopperCon 26, an annual sci-fi and fantasy convention.

More than 200 people attended the 26th CopperCon festival Sept. 1 to 4 at the Tempe Mission Palms Hotel.


Tech Check: Personalized Playlists
Dubbing itself a "social music revolution," www.last.fm allows you to be the ultimate music snob. After registering and downloading a plug-in, this Web site tracks every song you listen to on your computer and iPod.

Every week the site provides a bar chart of your top artists listened to. Charts of your overall top artists and songs are displayed as well.

Brite's Bites: Pizza preferable to pasties
After my subpar encounter with Cornish pasties last week, I received dozens of furious e-mails from pasty fans the world over.

Angry readers accused me of having no taste, and one even claimed I am trying to destroy independent businesses through this column. (I assure you that's not true.)

One reader recommended that to suit my "simple" tastes, I stick to simpler foods, like pizza. So that's exactly what I did for this review: I visited Nello's Pizza.


You Asked For It: It's no surprise
Do college guys think about anything besides sex?

Apparently not.

Local Limelight: The world on his shoulders
Atllas performs with gangster composure, but his style is classy and polished. Wearing collared shirts and ironed jeans during the day and a "bling" necklace with a T-shirt emblazoned with his song title "I am Hood Famous" during shows, the unique Phoenix hip-hop artist has found an equilibrium between the rap industry and his personal life.

Atllas has Mark Schmitz, a recent biomedical engineering student, partly to thank for his success. After winning ASU's Edson Entrepreneur Initiative Beneficiary a year and a half ago, Schmitz started The Grid Records, Phoenix's newest hip-hop label. With the help of a grant from the ASU program that provides funds to 10 to 15 student-led entrepreneurial ventures each year, The Grid Records is now hustling its way to the top of the industry.

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